The Republican-led state Senate wants to kill Gov. Cuomo’s controversial “Start-Up New York” economic development program by shifting and shift its $44.5 million in funding to promote tourism.
Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan said Tuesday that Cuomo’s program has been a bust.
“They acknowledged that only 756 jobs that have been created,” Flanagan said. “That alone should make us take a hard look and say ‘do we really need this program?’”
Start-Up New York was created by Cuomo to boost economic development upstate by offering tax-free zones on and around college campuses.
The Senate GOP plan includes $1.2 billion in tax cuts for businesses and cutting taxes on utility bills — though it does not offer offsetting spending cuts.
The Republicans, who maintain a narrow majority in the Senate, have generally worked well with Cuomo — which hasn’t sat well with conservatives.
But the public attack on Cuomo’s pet economic development program shows a streak of independence in an election year.
Cuomo spokesman Richard Azzopardi responded to the GOP attack by pointing out that Flanagan just endorsed Syracuse state Sen. John DeFrancisco, a fellow Republican, for governor.
“It’s no surprise that Flanagan supports Defran and adopted his policies, following the same ideology that brought him to support Trump, who is hostile to new York’s values and inflicted pain on all New Yorkers by raising their taxes and suppressing their individual rights and liberties,” said Azzopardi.